ACT Brumbies flyhalf Noah Lolesio admits "it's hard as young playmakers coming through the system here" where every rising star is painted as Australia's rugby's great hope.
So when the final whistle blows on Lolesio's Super Rugby AU battle with NSW Waratahs counterpart Will Harrison at Canberra Stadium on Saturday, they will take a moment together.
Not to talk rugby, but "how life is in general", because these two 21-year-olds have been dubbed as the future of the code. One, if not both, could steer Australia through to the next two World Cups.
Lolesio and Harrison combined for the Junior Wallabies team that made the final of the 2019 under 20 world championships, the team that shutout their New Zealand counterparts months earlier.
Now they are relishing a chance to go head to head on the grand stage as rugby fans across the country tune in to see two of the game's brightest stars in action.
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"Harro is a good mate of mine, we've grown up playing footy together," Lolesio said.
"It's awesome to see him do so well at the Tahs so I can't wait. I'm looking forward to playing against him this weekend.
"We crossed paths in Australian Schoolboys in 2017, he was 10 [flyhalf] and I was 12 [inside centre]. Then a couple of years after that we played 20s together. It's pretty cool.
"We're just used to it now I guess, we always have a bit of a joke and a laugh after a game. We probably don't even talk about footy, we just talk about how life is in general because it's hard as young playmakers coming through the system here.
"We're definitely expecting them to be hurting. We definitely know they're a better team than what they showed us in round one. We'd expect them to come out firing."
The Waratahs could be without captain Jake Gordon for the rest of the Super Rugby AU season with a high ankle sprain set to keep him sidelined for up to eight weeks.
NSW coach Rob Penney will be forced to name a new centre pairing to boot with Joey Walton's ankle injury more serious than initially feared, compounding Izaia Perese's three-game ban for a dangerous tackle.
An eight-week layoff would mean Gordon's return would come for the Waratahs' final match of the regular season on April 24, while Walton will consult a specialist before officials forecast a comeback.
Their absence leaves an already inexperienced squad even lighter with Penney already trying to cover for more than 1500 Super Rugby caps' worth of departures over the past two seasons.
The Brumbies enter the clash as heavy favourites against a side which conceded 41 unanswered points in Brisbane last week.
But Brumbies flanker Jahrome Brown is refusing to take the Waratahs lightly with the NSW pack set to welcome back Lachie Swinton in his first game since being red-carded during his Wallabies debut last year.
"We've just got to bring physicality in our forward pack and match them up front," Brown said.
"We're feeling pretty good, a few boys are a bit battered and sore after last week's game but everyone is excited to get back home and play at [Canberra] Stadium.
"First game at home, it will be good to play in front of our home crowd and hopefully get a few supporters out there.
"There were a few people coming to watch in our trial so hopefully they come to watch our first game, and hopefully we put a good performance out in front of them."
SUPER RUGBY AU ROUND TWO
Saturday: ACT Brumbies v NSW Waratahs at Canberra Stadium, 7.45pm. Broadcast: Live on Gem and Stan Sport. Tickets from Ticketek.
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